FIVE QUESTIONS WITH NATALIA LEBEDIN, AIA
January 25, 2019
We have a long history with Natalia, a Manitoba native with eight years of experience in architecture. She originally came to work at WSA Studio in 2007, and after a few years of caring for her adorable kids, she has returned to us as a project manager with a strong design sense. And we couldn’t be happier to have such a delightful addition to our studio (even though she’s on “Team Montreal Bagels”).
With two college degrees in English, one in Chemistry, and a Master in Architecture, Natalia draws from a wide knowledge base to inform her designs. She is currently managing several projects for one of the largest insurance companies in the country, whose headquarters are located in Columbus.
When and why did you decide to become an architect?
I decided to pursue architecture because I was pulled in two opposite directions at the same time. My family wanted me to have a job, and I wanted to be an artist [laughing]. So, with architecture, it seemed like a good marriage of creativity with a respected profession. It turns out I also like architecture because it’s so interdisciplinary, and my day is never the same.
What has been your biggest professional learning experience?
Having made mistakes in the past, my biggest learning experience in architecture is that you need to work as a team and make sure that many eyes review the work before you send it out. There can be a lot of liability for architects if mistakes aren’t caught in time.
Other than Tim Hawk, FAIA, what architects do you admire?
Second to Tim, I admire Ruth Gless, FAIA, for being a trailblazing female architect. She stands up for other female architects and thus raises everybody up. To me, architecture is personal, and I admire the real architects that make good architecture in the everyday.
If you had your own firm, what’s one thing you would make sure the office was stocked full of?
Nuts for snacking.
This is probably the most important question: If I asked your dog for a reference, what would she say about you?
”Scratch my ears more.”